Somewhere toward the end, it hit me that I had spent the vast majority of my time since I got to this fandom explaining why. Because when I first got into PoT even fewer people shipped Tezuka/Ryoma, and I felt like if I wanted more fic then I had to make a case for it as a worthwhile ship. And that meant trying to talk people into seeing the things I saw in this ship. I think somewhere along the line I became accustomed to having to automatically argue for this pairing, or at the very least the way I shipped it.
And it struck me all at once how sad it was that I've kind of been shipping it with my back to the wall for a while. I think that says more about my overall experiences with all fandoms, than any particular experience with this one. And then it hit me that, hey, maybe I should just relax and stop feeling like I have to build a compelling airtight case that Tezuka and Ryoma are in love, and just enjoy the fact that I believe they are.
And that felt nice.
And then immediately after that I caught Tess's link to this post-Oscar Brokeback Mountain tribute, which is also about not having to justify anything, and between the two, am just a little wibbly and teary and fine.